Private rental housing disrepair complaints procedure

To help alleviate the spread of the disease, Public Protection staff will only be carrying out visits where it is considered completely necessary and only after completing a suitable risk assessment.

Where a complaint regarding poor conditions is received, the case officer will contact the complainant by their preferred method of contact to discuss the defects and may ask them to provide additional photographic or video evidence to enable the Council to assess the risk.

The Council is still responsible for investigating poor housing conditions and will do its utmost to ensure that Landlords and Tenants fulfil their legal obligations, however, this must be balanced against the risk of infection or spread of the virus in line with current Government advice and guidance.

It is expected that tenants will have already contacted their Landlord or Agent to inform them of the defects and allow them an opportunity to remedy the situation.

Tenants must submit as much information as possible to include photographic evidence wherever possible.

We may also request video evidence at a later point to support your request.

Information required:

  • Full property address.
  • Complainant’s contact details, both telephone and email wherever possible.
  • Description of defects and the subsequent effect on occupants.
  • Tenants will inform Officers if there are any occupants that are displaying signs or symptoms of Covid-19 within the property.
  • Tenants will inform Officers of any occupants that are considered vulnerable persons within the property, including any key workers
  • Tenants will advise Officers of any occupants who are shielding within the property.

Where an inspection is considered essential, social distancing procedures will be applied and the officer visiting will wear personal protective equipment (for their own protection and to protect occupants)

In cases of significant concern it may be possible to carry out an inspection by way of a video call between Tenant and Officer (where feasible), e.g. using your smart phone video or other device.

Alternatively, tenants may be asked to leave a door unlocked to permit access and then retreat to another room, the inspection will be carried out in isolation and the Officer will make contact with the tenant upon completion to discuss how we will progress.

What are considered essential works?

Electrical defects that pose a risk of shock or fire.

Gas defects such as gas leaks, or a lack of heating or hot water.

An increased risk of fire originating from defective smoke detectors or defective fire alarm systems.

Drainage issues such as flooding or defective drains, or toilets or showers not working.

Tenancy relations and evictions

The UK Government has brought forward a package of measures to protect renters affected by Covid-19 (Coronavirus). With these in force, no renter in either social or private accommodation will be forced out of their home.

The Council will still investigate complaints of harassment and illegal eviction. Where a complaint is received the case officer will contact you to advise accordingly. 

We provide information and advice to tenants on a variety of subjects including:

  • Threat of eviction.
  • Harassment from your Landlord.
  • Repairs to rented property.
  • Mobile home sites.
  • Licensing of rented accommodation.

Advice to landlords

The Landlord is responsible for ensuring they comply with all relevant legislation. Please note that we do not advise Landlords on how to comply with legislation and any information provided does not constitute advice and you should seek your own expert advice e.g. from a Landlord association or solicitor.